Music Monday: October 18, 2021

Hi, everyone. Welcome back to the blog for this week’s Music Monday.

Music Monday

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

On October 17, 1980 Bruce Springsteen released “The River”. As a fan of The Boss I adore all his music but this one holds a particularly special place in my heart. The first time I saw him sing, it was the title track from this double album. I was completely mesmerized by watching him & hearing the heartbreaking lyrics to that incredible song. It solidified my love & admiration for this incredible man for life.

I saw him perform that track in the film “No Nukes” based on the concerts of the same name which took place the year before. Next month all 13 songs from Springsteen’s appearances from the two day benefit concerts in 1979 will finally be released. In honor of this occasion, today’s song is one of the tunes he & The E Street Band performed during those shows. It is the first track from his 1975 paragon of perfection, “Born To Run”. From the moment I heard these lines, I knew my life would never be the same.

What else can we do now
Except roll down the window
And let the wind
Blow back your hair
“.

No Nukes picture

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Bruce Springsteen: “Thunder Road” (1975, written by Bruce Springsteen).

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 173

Hi everyone.  Hope you are all well and continue to stay that way during this global health crisis we are facing.  But in addition to protecting your physical wellness, what are you doing to stay mentally healthy today?

Bruce quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are in a serious situation, but I need a break from the gloom, doom and bullying by way of hoarding. Music has always been my refuge and watching those beautiful Italians singing to each other from their balconies reaffirmed my belief that music is the answer. So until the old normal returns, I am going to share a song I listen to that helps me escape the current state of things, if only for a few minutes each day.  And if this helps anyone else, even better.

There was an endless array of music available in the mid 1960’s.  There were bands that were part of the the British Invasion, groups from Motown, folk artists which translated into singer/songwriters and good old pop acts.  There was also a group that was just pure soul rock and that was Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels.  Ryder, born William Levise, Jr., with his unbelievable ability to encompass blue eyed soul in his rough bellowing signature voice, is undoubtedly one of the best soul rock singers ever.  

He started singing when he was a teenager, greatly influenced by his father, also a musician.  He was the lead singer of two bands in high school and it was the second one that eventually became The Detroit Wheels: lead guitarist Jim McCarty, rhythm guitarist Joe Kubert, bassist Earl Elliot and drummer Johnny Badanjek.  Together they had several hits between 1964-1967 including “Jenny Take a Ride”, “Little Latin Lupe Lu”, “Sock It to Me, Baby!” and today’s song before Ryder left for a solo career.  Unfortunately neither he nor the band achieved the success alone they did as a group.  But together they were a force to be reckoned with.    

Ryder also has the distinction of being the last person to ever sing with Otis Redding.  The two men closed a local Cleveland TV show together with a performance of “Knock On Wood” on December 9, 1967.  It was the next day that Redding, four members of his band, The Bar Kays & their valet died in a plane crash with the pilot. 

I discovered Ryder through-who else, Bruce Springsteen-when I bought the “No Nukes” concert album in 1979 and heard his cover of what he named the “Detroit Medley”.  It included parts of today’s pick plus two other songs, “C.C. Rider” & “Jenny Take A Ride” before seguing back to the first song to close it out.  This performance, however, was not included in the movie as the powers that be chose three other Springsteen performances for the film:  “The River”, “Thunder Road” & his cover of Gary U.S. Bonds’ 1961 hit, “Quarter To Three”.  But because of Bruce I discovered Ryder & The Wheels which is yet another reason why I love The Boss.   

Wearin’ her perfume, Chanel No. 5
Got to be the finest thing alive
Walks real cool, catches everybody’s eye
Catch you too nervous and you can’t say hi“.  

Ryder The Wheels
Mitch Ryder (center) with The Detroit Wheels circa 1964.  (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels:  “Devil With A Blue Dress On/ Good Golly Miss Molly” ( 1966, “Devil With A Blue Dress” written by Frederick “Shorty Long and William “Mickey” Stevenson circa 1964 and “Good Golly” written by John Marascalco and Robert “Bump” Blackwell circa 1955).   

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 3

Hi everyone.  Hope you are all well and continue to stay that way during this global health crisis we are facing.  But in addition to protecting your physical wellness, what are you doing to stay mentally healthy today?

music heart

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are in a serious situation, but I need a break from the gloom, doom and bullying by way of hoarding. Music has always been my refuge and watching those beautiful Italians singing to each other from their balconies reaffirmed my belief that music is the answer. So until the old normal returns, I am going to share a song I listen to that helps me escape the current state of things, if only for a few minutes each day. And if this helps anyone else, even better.

Today’s song brings me hope when I feel like there isn’t any, and it has been that way since the first time I heard it when I was 12 years old. But it is not about looking for a solution where there isn’t one. It’s about doing something even when there is nothing you can do. Because when everything around us is falling apart, “what else can we do now except roll down the window and let the wind blow back your hair”.

BTR

 “Born To Run” Album photo by Eric Meola.  

Day 3: Bruce Springsteen: “Thunder Road” (1975, written by Bruce Springsteen).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

25 Days Of Christmas Music 2018: Day 9

Hi, Everybody!!!  Welcome back to the countdown.

day 10

Vintage Christmas card image found on Pinterest (original source unknown). 

We lost today’s artist, Roy Orbison, 30 years ago this month.  He started his career in the late 1950’s at Sun Records but eventually moved to Monument Records in the 1960’s where he met Willie Nelson, who wrote today’s song.  The 1980’s saw Orbison in a  career resurgence thanks to his part in the super group, Traveling Wilburys.  Bruce Springsteen is a huge fan of his, even immortalized Orbison in “Thunder Road”  (“…as the radio plays…Roy Orbison singing for the lonely…”) and inducted him into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame in 1987.  Springsteen and several other musicians took part in HBO’s “Roy Orbison & Friends:  A Black & White Night” which was filmed a year before Orbison’s death.

He began his career singing emotional ballads in an almost operatic style underscored by his wide vocal range.  Many of his songs were about lost love (“Crying”) or losing love (“Running Scared”) or just admiring someone probably out of his league (“Oh Pretty Woman”).  Even his one contribution to holiday music is sad, but the chance to hear his fabulous unique voice anytime of year is worth it.

VARIOUS

Roy Orbison circa 1960 (original source unknown). 

Roy Orbison:  “Pretty Paper“(1963).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing some things that I love with you  🙂

What are some of your favorite Christmas songs?

Until next time, happy listening!!!

Fall Memories of & Happy Birthday Bruce Springsteen!!!

Like so many of you, fellow Vixens, fall is my favorite time of year.  It has been that way my whole life.  The cooler temperatures, the leaves changing colors, the crunch of the fallen ones underfoot or jumping in a freshly raked pile of them, pumpkins, Halloween, fall festivals, apple picking and the smell of wood burning in fireplaces…..need I go on?

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It started when I was a kid planning my costume and dreaming about how much yummy candy I would get on All Hallow’s Eve.  I would also wonder how big that year’s pumpkin would be and how sweet it would smell with a candle in it to light up the carved face.  Then when I was older I used to walk home from school in the fall after field hockey practice.  At the beginning of the season, it was still hot thanks to Indian Summer so the mile I had to walk home in the heat was excruciating.  But once October arrived, it not only got cooler but it would start to get dark by the time I was halfway home.  Then the walk was glorious.

I smelled the fireplaces that were needed to get the chill out of houses.  I listened to the leaves crunching under my feet.  I admired the many different carved pumpkins on display on front porches or in big picture windows.  I adored the way the cool crisp air touched my cheeks like sweet tender caresses.  I studied the changing hues of the sky as the sun set and the moon emerged. And I marveled at the beauty and wonder of this spectacular time of year.  

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As I walked towards the door of my house, I could see the warmth of the lights welcoming home.  As sad as I was that my evening reverie was over, I was happy to be home.  Things were far from perfect, but I could count on several things:  that a hearty plate of dinner was waiting for me in the oven, courtesy of my dear sweet  grandmother; that I would get to kiss, hug, cuddle and play with my little brother; that after I ate and did my chores, I could listen to my Bruce Springsteen records and that my dad would watch TV with us every night.

A lot of life has happened to me in the fall, some good, some bad and some heartbreaking.  But through all of it, autumn is simply astonishing in its loveliness year after year.

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The first day of fall is also special to me because it is Bruce Springsteen’s birthday.  The first time I bought one of his records  (Born To Run) was in the fall following the worst summer of my life-the one in which my mother died leaving her 12 year old daughter and the rest of her family behind.  The world had become so dark I forgot what light was like.  But one listen to Springsteen’s album and suddenly all that changed.

In that moment, fall had a new color.  It was so exquisite and bright I never quite saw things the same way again.  That color gave me back a glimpse of hope that maybe I could look forward to a future, one where happily ever after did not end in a horribly final way…..where I did not end up like my father and lose the love of my life at the age of 36.  

I love Bruce Springsteen for many things, but giving me back my hope is the biggest reason why.  It is a debt I will never be able to repay.  The mantra of my life, even after all these years, is from “Thunder Road”:  ” What else can we do now except roll down the window and let the wind blow back your hair.”.  Those words carry me through my life.

Thank you, Boss Man.  Happy Birthday & Happy Fall.

Until next time, fellow Vixens, happy digging and Happy Fall!!! 

Estate Sales, Explorations & An Exquisite Anniversary

Hello, Vixens!!!  How have you been?

I have been avoiding the heat of these final weeks of summer by staying inside in the A/C to either work or unpack.  But when you are as bad of a procrastinator as I am, time goes by even quicker than usual (or so it seems).  This is where I started-with a mountain of boxes in my living room:

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I left the bedroom and kitchen clutter free so I could function and live in them while I went thru the boxes (and because I know how slow I am!!!  LOL)  Those two rooms are not close to being set up yet either, but at least they are box free.  I really want things livable by the end of next month so I am ready to celebrate the arrival of fall (HOORAY!!!).  So what did I choose to do this weekend with a ton of unpacking still left to do?  Of course, I hit some estate sales!!!

I have not indulged that much this summer for the obvious reasons, and I was getting stuck in my head between wanting things in my apartment to be perfect and getting lost in the details of it all.  So my solution was to clear my mind by getting out & exploring the new state I live in.  I originally had plans to go to the Bridgewater County Fair  but the weather was still a little too hot for me, so I decided to wait until next month before attending any fairs.

GPS took me to the first sale through the beautiful back roads of CT.  It was so nice to be amongst nature instead of just looking at other cars and cement.  Here is a picture I took from the car at a red light:

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It was my view for most of the ride.  Just beautiful.

I also passed this tiny little cemetery.  Have I ever told you how much I love cemeteries?  They may represent death, but they are always so peaceful and showcase such beautiful craftsmanship on the stones, especially the older ones.  Some tell you a family’s history, or contain poetry or bible verses.  But all of them tell you someone was loved and remembered, which is the nicest part of all to me.

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At the  first two sales I did not see anything I wanted, so I just enjoyed looking around and being back in the game.  However, at the last sale I went to I found these beautiful pieces of silverware, including a few ice tea spoons to add to my collection.  It is not a complete set, but I do not mind since I love the pattern.  And all these pieces (plus 6 knives not pictured) were only $10!!!

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After my purchase, I went to CVS for a snack.  I am obsessed with their Kettle Corn and lucky for me it was on sale so I stocked up!!!

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I also took some time to admire all their fall candles.  Isn’t it great how you can buy your fall decorations and Halloween candy at the same time you buy your back to school items???  NOT LOL!!!

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After that I traveled around aimlessly for a while longer and came upon one of my FAVORITE places in the ENTIRE  world:  Stew Leonard’s!!!

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The first time I went to this chain was last November but that was at their Yonkers location.  The one above (in Danbury) is less than 15 minutes from my apartment!!!  It could get me into trouble, but this weekend it gave me a great dinner from their hot buffet and some fruit and vegetables for later in the week.  If you have never been and there is one in your area, you MUST GO!!!  Their nickname is the “Disneyland of Dairy Stores”!!!

Sorry for the quality of the pictures, but I took them on my iPhone because it was a little too hot to carry around my SLR.

No part of this blog was sponsored.  I am just sharing my weekend with you.  🙂

So, have you been to any estate sales lately???

Also, today marks the 40th anniversary of the release of one of the greatest rock albums of all time, Bruce Springsteen’s “Born To Run”.  This album changed my life.  I believe the last song on the record, “Jungleland” is still the greatest song I have ever heard.  And when all else fails, I remember a quote from the first song on the album, “Thunder Road” which always seems to help me find my way again:  “What else can we do now except roll down the window and let the wind blow back your hair.”  Amen.

To commemorate this landmark album’s anniversary, Backstreets.com is selling the poster below.  Too cool!!!  And all net proceeds will go to WhyHunger.  Even cooler!!!

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Photo courtesy of Eric Meola.

Until next time, Vixens, happy digging & happy listening!!!